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Postdoctoral Scholar - Marine Biodiversity Lab (Bracken)

Position overview

Salary range: The salary range for this position is $55,632-$66,600. The posted UC salary scales set the minimum pay determined by experience level. See Postdoctoral Scholar Scale for the salary range. “Off-scale salaries”, i.e. a salary that is higher than the published system-wide salary at the designated experience, are offered when necessary to meet competitive conditions.

Application Window

Open date: March 3, 2023

Next review date: Sunday, Apr 2, 2023 at 11:59pm (Pacific Time)
Apply by this date to ensure full consideration by the committee.

Final date: Friday, Jun 30, 2023 at 11:59pm (Pacific Time)
Applications will continue to be accepted until this date, but those received after the review date will only be considered if the position has not yet been filled.

Position description

Vulnerability of seaweed species and marine ecosystem functioning to environmental change

This NSF-supported postdoctoral position is in marine ecology, focused on quantifying variation in functional traits of intertidal seaweeds across environmental (tidal elevation, wave exposure, latitude) gradients along the coastlines of California and Europe. Along with collaborators at Swansea University in Wales and the University of Porto in Portugal, our laboratory group at the University of California, Irvine, is evaluating links between seaweed species traits and community structure to evaluate the functional uniqueness versus redundancy of seaweeds and their vulnerability to environmental change. The successful candidate will ideally have experience identifying and measuring seaweeds and conducting field and laboratory experiments and assays.

Application Due Date: April 2, 2023
Start Date: Flexible, ideally between April and June 2023

The primary responsibilities of this position include the following:

  1. Field surveys and experiments (~30%) to evaluate intertidal community structure and seaweed traits and assess traits associated with susceptibility to grazers. Research will primarily be conducted at sites in California (near UC Irvine and near the UC Davis Bodega Marine Laboratory) but also at locations in the United Kingdom and Portugal in coordination with our collaborators. Field work will be done with support from graduate students, undergraduates, PIs, and collaborators.
  2. Laboratory experiments and assays (~15%), including measurement of seaweed nutrient uptake, photosynthesis, and electron transport rates and elemental composition. Data will be collected with support from graduate students and undergraduates.
  3. Data analyses (~20%), including analyses of community trait data to evaluate changes across environmental gradients and characterize species’ functional redundancy versus uniqueness to facilitate writing and presenting research results.
  4. Writing and presentation of results (~25%), including drafting and submitting manuscripts for publication in peer-reviewed journals and presenting results at scientific meetings.
  5. Mentoring (~10%) of undergraduates and graduate students conducting related research.

Minimum qualifications:

  1. A doctoral degree in biology, ecology, marine science, or a related field from an accredited university
  2. The ability and desire to work both independently and collaboratively as both a member and leader of a team, including mentorship of graduate and undergraduate students
  3. Project leadership, time management, fieldwork, data management and analysis, and writing skills
  4. A publication record demonstrating the ability to conduct independent research

The postdoctoral scholar will work directly with Dr. Matthew Bracken ( in the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at UC Irvine, and they will collaborate with the laboratory groups of Dr. John Griffin at Swansea University in Wales and Dr. Francisco Arenas at the University of Porto in Portugal. There will be opportunities to mentor graduate and undergraduate students. The appointment will be for 24 months, and salary will be commensurate with qualifications and experience at a minimum starting level of $60,000 per year.

Please apply through the UCI AP Recruit at A complete application includes the following: (1) a cover letter that includes (at minimum) (i) a research statement, (ii) a description of how your qualifications and career goals are an excellent fit for the advertised position, and (iii) your past and planned contributions to inclusive excellence; (2) a CV; (3) contact information for three references; and (4) a copy of a publication or preprint. Contact Matthew Bracken ( with any questions.


Basic qualifications (required at time of application)

Accepting all applicants

Application Requirements

Document requirements
Reference requirements
  • 3-5 required (contact information only)
Apply link:

Campus Information

The University of California, Irvine is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer advancing inclusive excellence. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, age, protected veteran status, or other protected categories covered by the UC nondiscrimination policy.

As a condition of employment, you will be required to comply with the University of California Policy on Vaccination Programs – With Updated Interim Amendments. All Covered Individuals under the policy must provide proof of receiving the COVID-19 Vaccine Primary Series or, if applicable, submit a request for Exception (based on Medical Exemption, Disability, Religious Objection, and/or Deferral based on pregnancy or recent COVID-19 diagnosis and/or treatment) no later than the applicable deadline. All Covered Individuals must also provide proof of receiving the most recent CDC-recommended COVID-19 booster or properly decline such booster no later than the applicable deadline. New University of California employees should refer to Exhibit 2, Section II.C. of the SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) Vaccination Program Attachment for applicable deadlines. All Covered Individuals must also provide proof of being up-to-date on seasonal influenza vaccination or properly decline such vaccination no later than the applicable deadline. Please refer to the Seasonal Influenza Vaccination Program Attachment. (Capitalized terms in this paragraph are defined in the policy.) Federal, state, or local public health directives may impose additional requirements.

Job location

Irvine, CA